Somaliland: 2 Television Journalists released, 1 still held in Police custody in the town of Boorama
MOGADISHU, Somalia, January 18, 2012/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- The National Union of Somali Journalists (NUSOJ) welcomes the release of 2 Television Journalists in the police custody in the towns of Erigabo of Sanaag region and Boorama of Awdal region on Tuesday making the total journalists released within 2 days to 24 and urges the release of the journalist who is still in custody in Boorama without bring him to court and allow the Television to resume its operations.
Somalisat Television reporter, Abdirisaq Haghi Ahmed who was arrested by Erigabo Police on 14 January, 2012 for allegedly taking interviews from youth supporting the recent Taleex conference and Royal TV reporter Yusuf Ali who was arrested on January 8, 2012 and after spending two days in CID custody was transferred in Boorama jail on January 10, 2012, after a court in Boorama charged him to remain in jail for 45 days. He was was arrested for writing a story over alleged corruption of the regional projects of Awdal region.
The release of Abdirisaq Haghi Ahmed of Somali Sat TV follows after police found enough evidences that the journalist could appear before court, upon which, Sanaag regional Police Chief, Hasan Ismail Yusuf ordered his release on Tuesday 17 January, 2012. He was scheduled to appear in Court today..
Whereas, Royal TV reporter Yusuf Ali better known as "Indho Qurux" was released on Tuesday 17 January, 2011 from jail. His release came after the journalist met with anti-corruption commission in the jail over the alleged corruption he wrote about that led to his arrest, according to Mohamed Abdi Boosh of Royal Television reached by phone from Hargeysa.
Both journalists worked for privately owned televisions and were released on Tuesday 17 January, 2011 without charges.
However, Ali Aareye, Waheen Borama Correspondent, who arrested on January 12, 2012 for allegedly taking photographs on petrol station owned by the vice president, Abdirahman Abdullahi Ismail better known as Saylici is still in custody and was not brought before court.
"We welcome the release of our colleagues and reiterate our call for the release of Ali Aareeye, who is still in detention for six days without bringing him to court." Mohamed Ibrahim, NUSOJ Secretary General said, "We demand from the Somaliland authorities to stop its measures in trying to silence the media and at the same time respect the freedom of expression as enshrined in the Somaliland constitution."
Somaliland authorities released 22 journalists who were detained in a string of arrests against journalists in Somaliland for the past week.
21 one of them were detained on Sunday for making protests in front of the Presidential palace in Hargeysa followed by arrests and closure of Horn Cable Television, meanwhile Abdiqani Hassan Farah Gadari, a universal TV reporter who was detained on January 9. 2012 in the town of Laas-Anod was released on Sunday 16 January, 2012
24 Journalists have been released on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday, but the the television licence is still under suspention. Journalists in Somalia are at risks for their reporting resulting deaths, torture, arrests, intimidation and death threats.